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Terminix Review (2020 Edition)

Looking for an expert review of the Terminix Pest Control company?

Perfect you're in the right place!

In this review you'll learn:

  • What do our resident pest experts think of Terminix?
  • Which pests does Terminix cover?
  • How expensive is Terminix compared to other pest companies?
  • Does Terminix offer free inspections?
  • Is Terminix even worth it?
  • And much more!
terminix Company Review

What's The History of Terminix?

A review on a company like Terminix deserves something a little more than just your run of the mill is it good or is it bad kind of direction. This company has had it's ups and downs and showing a great amount of survivability when it comes to enduring what the financial world is capable of throwing at it. It is this kind of survivability that gives a company the opportunity to really thrive and make a name for its self. 

Terminix is a company that has been around since 1932 when senior chemist Frank Lyons created the first termiticide, an insecticide specifically designed to kill termites. The company began to franchise under the name Bruce Terminix. In 1955,

Terminix was the first company to offer a termite protection contract, with annual inspections and a guarantee. However, it wouldn't be until 1957 when the treatment would be made available for residential accounts.

terminix history

Eleven years later in 1968, the company would sell to Cooks and Cooks would take it global making it the well-known household name that it is today. Cooks held onto the business for 20 years before they decided to sell to a company known as ServiceMasters which owns Terminix to this day.

Terminix Today

Terminix is not just your run of the mill general pest control company offering your typical quarterly service.  In fact, they may be the last of the true exterminator companies out there.

Most people use the term Pest control and Exterminator interchangeably as if they are the same thing and honestly they aren't a pest Control Technician is someone who uses Integrated Pest Management or IPM to solve your problems and uses as little pest control as possible while an Exterminator is someone who does something more along the lines of tenting your home and fumigates the entire structure to kill everything inside. 

Read Also: Is Orkin a good pest control company?

These days fumigation practices are rare and for good reason. Firstly they are expensive and how expensive depends on the size of your home, a 2000 square foot home could easily cost 2000 dollars or more to treat. Secondly, it doesn't prevent the pest from setting back up nor does it usually kill any eggs in the home meaning you will still have a pest problem after spending all of that money.

While Terminix has this option they have grown and grown and grown over the years causing them to become one of the largest pest control companies in the world and with this increase in size, they have had to adjust their methods to adapt to the pest control services needs of today. 

To say that Terminix is a large company would be to pass up the opportunity to use the term colossal. Terminix is a colossal entity in the pest control industry. One could almost make the comparison that this company is like the mythical sea serpent Jörmungandr. Terminix International Company, L.P. is one of the largest pest control companies in the world, operating in 47 states in the United States and 22 countries around the world.

What Is Terminix's Process?

Despite their growth, this company still offers the same guarantee on its work since 1955. This guarantee states that when you will never pay for any future termite damage or repairs caused by termites as long as you stick with their plan. They also guarantee 100% satisfaction or your money back.

Now in a world where termites can cause well over eight-thousand dollars in damage to your home and they cause 5 billion dollars worth of damage a year this sounds like a pretty fantastic deal for anyone who has potential termite problems. 

Terminix has four main ways of delivering on this promise and protecting your home from termites.

The first method is the liquid defend system. 

This method is where they create a treatment zone at specific entry points around and through your building foundation. Once exposed, termites pick the product up and then take it back with them causing it to spread the treatment to the colony, shutting down the infestation.

Their second avenue of approach is the bait defend system. 

How this program works is that it uses baiting stations in strategic locations around your building. Unlike some of the other baiting systems where that are above ground, their bait goes into the ground immediately right where the termites are the most active, this way you are protected from termites before they even reach your home. In this method your pest control professional drills, a hole into the earth and strategically places bait stations around the house in an attempt to catch termites on the way to the home and stop the problem before it ever gets to your house.

Their third system is the fumigation method or as they call it the tent defend system. 

This treatment involves dispersing a carefully controlled, specialized fumigant throughout an infested structure. The fumigant penetrates all structural wood timbers, trim, finished wood and furniture, and hard-to-treat walls and studs. The one major problem with this is that it's expensive, time-consuming, and inconvenient. If you have to receive this treatment you will need to have somewhere to stay for 24 to 72 hours.

The fourth and final system is their coring techniques. 

This treatment is for buildings surrounded by concrete or asphalt. The coring technique is used to install baiting stations. This process is performed quickly and cleanly, without disrupting your business or damaging your structure. In case this isn't very clear this is most likely going to be used at a commercial account where the entire building is surrounded by asphalt or concrete. They drill a 3 or 4-inch wide hole into the asphalt and into the ground so that they can place a bait station into the hole. 

Before performing any of these treatments a Terminix technician will come to your home and do a thorough inspection for any signs of termites on all of the exterior foundation, crawl space, or basement if present. Also, they inspect interior walls and any place where wood contacts the ground. If termites are found the technician then recommends the appropriate treatment, if no termites are found they will then recommend a termite protection plan to protect you from future infestations.

Read Also: Orkin Vs Terminix Vs Local Companies

As our readers might expect being a company of this magnitude has great advantages and disadvantages. For instance, I think it would be safe to say that Terminix is well known enough to be considered famous. At least they are famous when you are speaking about them in the topic of pest control. 

What does all of this have to do with you? How does their size or fame concern you the reader or even myself the writer? Because it equals prestige, and prestige means that people expect, nay they demand more excellent service from you than they ever will of the small family-owned business nearby. If you want to be the largest and carry the name as the best in the business, then you have to live with the fact that you are going to be under the constant watch and scrutiny of the world you serve. 

With that being said I just want us all to remember that with such a vast business spread over most of the world that it is far easier for a company of this girth to have more problems per month with customer's complaints than your average business will. A pest control company that has 1000 customers and 10 employees might get 1 or 2 complaints a month but when you have 8,500 employees and approximately 2.8 million customers worldwide you are just going to have more problems.

However, as I have extended that bit of grace towards Terminix in this review an old saying comes to mind. As a manager of mine always used to say "A problem is really just an opportunity in disguise and an objection is just the problem someone wants you to solve." So let's explore how Terminix does in general when it comes to not just their pest control techniques but how do they treat their customers and employees.

Employee work experience

When you hire a pest control company to come to your home to deal with any manner of infestation what do you look at? You check out services offered. If you want a termite inspection and the company doesn't do offer that kind of service you're going to move onto the next company. But have you ever considered taking a look at what the companies former employees have to say about the company?

As a consumer, I can forgive quite a lot of transgressions if I know the company I am hiring treats it's employees well because a happy employee does better work than a disgruntled one and if I receive poor work from the service technician I might be annoyed with the technician at first but I am ultimately going to be upset with the company in question.

Most of the complaints from former employees have the same kind of pattern. Long hours, no work-life balance, high turn over rates, and outdated computers and software. Quite honestly most of us do not love the job that we do and most of us do not hate the job that we do; but if your equipment isn't functioning or your management team doesn't have your back, you then get to spend very little time with your family because of the demands of the job it can quickly turn into an employee having enough and if they don't just quit it's the customer who suffers.

To sum up, what their previous employees think of them lets just say it borders on dismal. Out of 900+ reviews, across every position, Terminix's own employees only give it a 2.5 to a 3.2-star rating in quality in regards to how the company treats them. To say the least, it isn't inspiring.

I hope that one day Terminix will see that having a workforce that wants to be at work will increase the morale of their workers, increased morale will lead to better work productivity and quality of work and of course that will then lead to happier customers which is also the cornerstone to being the very best in the world at what you do.

terminix customer service

Are Customers Happy With Terminix?

However, does Terminix deliver where it counts?

While I understand that Terminix is a worldwide organization the reviews I see really come from here in America and perhaps other people in other countries receive a better service across the pond. But here in the states, things do not look so good.

Perhaps Terminix was a better company to hire before ServiceMaster bought them in 1986 but these days what customers have to say about the company is quite the mixed bag. I know people that have them and love them and I know people that have them and wish they had anyone else.

On top of that what my research shows is that their average ratings across multiple resources indicate that despite their size at best this company is a C+ or a 3.2-star rating just about anywhere you want to look. Some customers have even gone so far as to call their pest control plan an outright scam.

Customers that dealt with the call center seemed to be able to get someone out to deal with their problems the next day whereas people who call a local office just seem to get a voicemail more often than a real person.

Other customers talk about how they received service from Terminix and found their service unsatisfactory. So what did this customer do? They called the office and told them that they were not satisfied with the service and they wanted their money back as the guarantee states. Did Terminix honor there guarantee? No, they refused to refund the money. 

Despite all of these negative reviews, they are an accredited member of the Better Business Bureau and have an A rating with them. This, of course, is not based on reviews but the way that Terminix interacts with its customers when they make a complaint. An A rating is not an A+ rating but it does show that the company makes an effort to reach out and solve the problems of its customers.

Which Pests Does Terminix Cover?

Terminix covers a wide variety of pests and in fact, might even cover the most pests of any modern-day pest control company. Below is a list of critters, creatures, wildlife and vermin that they can help you with.

Millipedes, wasps, wasp nest removal, centipedes, mice, rats, House crickets, cockroaches, house ants, carpenter ants, bed bugs, clothes moths, paper wasps, silverfish, earwigs, spiders (non-dangerous), scorpions, and ticks.

Outside of the common pests that they offer additional treatments for termite services that include termite treatments, termite inspections, termite control, and termite damage services. They also have wildlife control services that deal with raccoons, opossums, groundhogs, skunks, and squirrels. In addition to the animals mentioned here, Terminix services attics, and crawl spaces.

If you own a business Terminix also offers its services for commercial accounts. If standard pest control isn't the kind of service you want at your business Terminix also offers an EcoControl plan. Their EcoControl utilizes environmentally considerate methods. They state that It’s a pest solution that reduces your footprint and effectively protects your business from pests. 

What does that mean for you the customer? Well, it means that they put an emphasis on proactive inspection and elimination of conducive conditions. It means that wherever possible, they replace your typical man-made chemical treatments with natural substances, like plant essential oils, and alternate methods, like trapping. 

In addition to fewer chemicals it means that they also incorporate more Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices, including educating their employees to maintain those non-conducive conditions instead of relying solely on chemical treatments. 

How Expensive Is Terminix?

As you have probably discovered if you've read more than one review on a pest control company the price of your service is going to depend on the type of pest that you have, if it falls into the best control category or wildlife, and lastly how much area you need to have treated. 

When it comes to termites rates also depend on the size of the infested area as well as the severity of infestation and type of treatment. As a result, Terminix prices for termite ranges from $5 to $20 per square foot. As such, charges for an average home is between $1,200 to $2,500. Now, this assumes of course that the price is based on doing a trenching treatment around the house. A foaming treatment that is done inside the wall will have a different price attached to it.

However, I can say that I have seen prices for quarterly pest control services range between 70 dollars a quarter to nearly 200 dollars a quarter. This price ranges so much because it depends on what special promotional offers the company is running during peak sales season to get new customers.

Is Terminix Pet Safe?

For many people, their home is not truly a home until they bring home that special fur baby, or sometimes scale or feather baby. Pets are like family. They are constantly bringing us joy and for some people, they are the very center of their world. So the question as to how safe something is for our pets is a very serious question and it needs to be answered in a no-nonsense kind of way.

In the eyes of Terminix that is one reason that having a pest control service is so important. Keeping down creatures like mosquitos, ticks and fleas keep your pets safe and the way that you use pesticides is also important. One reason so many people hire a pest control company to do their service is not that they can't do it themselves but rather because it gives them access to a professional that knows how to do it safely and what changes they may need to make depending on the kind of pet that you have.

Terminix gives a few useful tips on how to keep your pet safe from these harmful creatures which include cleaning their bedding on a regular basis, keep their food stored in a sealed container to exclude flies from transmitting diseases, and of course regularly check your pet for the kinds of pests that might infest them like fleas and ticks.

In addition, their technicians use pesticides according to the label and do not treat pets at all. However, for the efficiency of service and as a precaution, you should always remove all your pets and put food and toys away from the area that a technician is treating in or outside of your home.

One of the best things I've found while writing this review is that Terminix has an entire section dedicated to your pet safety and what you can do to protect your pet. As always speak with your technician before they begin the treatment and ask about any pet safety points that you may need to observe and for how long.

Does Terminix Offer Free Inspections?

While I was researching I saw many advertisements that would lead me to believe that Terminix offers a free quote but upon further reading, I found some recent complaints that they were charged 75 dollars just for a quote.

This seems a little strange and it makes me wonder if the person is using the word quote in place of inspection. But I can only go off what I see and not what I suspect.

Besides what I've noted above about the free quote confusion, Terminix advertises that it will perform a free inspection.

However, I think it is important to point out the fine print that comes along with this free inspection. More specifically this part of the small print.

"If termite activity is found during the initial, there will be an additional fee for curative treatments or clean-out services. For qualifying homes only."

Essentially there is a free initial inspection and home inspection unless they find termite activity and then you have to pay for the inspection.

I think that this is a very misleading practice on the part of Terminix and while some might say that it's just good marketing I can not imagine wanting to use a company that springs hidden fees on me for something I was expecting to be free. So buyer beware if you think you have termites.

Our Overall Review of Terminix

While we found some customers love Terminix, most people encourage the use of local contractors with better pricing and more tailored support.

I do think that the variance that we see here has more to do with your local Terminix branch and who is running the office.

Overall, Terminix is among the largest pest control providers in the United States, and while they aren't perfect they do provide a decent quality service. Unlike local companies, they have a large customer service department you can complain to if you're not happy with your service. This isn't the case with local ships.

Our recommendation would be to get a quote from Terminix as well as a local company to compare pricing.  If the local shop is way above Terminix, then go with Terminix, but if they are close, you should go with local as you'll general receive better service.

Pros

  • A large organization that you have access to worldwide.
  • Treats a wide variety of pests and wildlife issues.
  • Can perform a full fumigation service if you absolutely need one.

Cons

  • Poor customer reviews.
  • Can be expensive.
  • The quality of work varies from branch to branch.

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